Call for Papers

Each issue of the journal contains an open section to provide a platform for general contributions on conflict and violence. Single contributions may be submitted at any point in time.

In addition each issue of IJCV also contains a so-called focus section. Contributions for a focus section are usually submitted in response to a Call for Papers (see below). Selected authors may be invited directly to participate in a focus section. If you are interested in guest editing an IJCV focus section, or if you have any suggestions for possible topics, please feel free to contact us.

Aside from regular scientific papers IJCV invites literature reviews that critically engage with the achievements and desiderata of conflict and violence research. Papers may be designed either according to regional or topical considerations. Thus academic production on a specific form of conflict and/or violence may be reviewed. Also, academic literature on conflict and/or violence in specific regions or sub-regions from around the world may be analyzed. Literature reviews will be subject to the journal’s standardized review process – for further information on manuscript preparations and review organization please contact us.


Focus Section on „Processes of Radicalization and Polarization in the Context of Transnational Islamist Terrorism”

Guest Editors: Arin H. Ayanian(1), Nils Böckler(2), Herbert Scheithauer(3), and Andreas Zick(1)

(1) The Institute for Interdisciplinary Research on Conflict and Violence (IKG), Bielefeld University
(2) Institute Psychology and Threat Management
(3) Developmental Science and Applied Developmental Psychology, Free University of Berlin


For Europe the phenomenon of violence-oriented Islamism and radicalization seems not to be controllable solely by measures of safety policy. In order to develop effective prevention and intervention programs, comparative research and the knowledge-based exchange of best practices need to be fostered. Therefore, the IJCV focus section on “Processes of Radicalization and Polarization in the Context of Transnational Islamist Terrorism” aims at publishing papers that focus on relevant empirical research and theoretical perspectives concerning individual and collective processes of radicalization, as well as social dynamics and conflicts associated with them. Topics to be addressed in the focus section are:

  • Jihadist terrorism: Theoretical concepts and empirical findings
  • Societal challenges: Radicalized milieus, Islamophopic counter-movements, new types of conflicts
  • Prevention, intervention, and de-radicalization: Evaluations, options, and limits

1) Jihadist terrorism: Theoretical concepts and empirical findings
More than 5000 young Europeans joined the IS or other terrorist organizations between 2012 and 2016. Islamist propaganda as well as its growingly professionalized dissemination fascinate young people with and without migration background. Apart from a high number of returnees from Syria and Iraq, Western Societies have to deal with a broad circle of sympathizers and supporters – some of them with close relationships into the Salafist scene, some of them loners with personal grievances, and some of them having severe psychiatric disorders. The IJCV focus section therefore is looking for empirical research and theoretical concepts, focusing on the following questions:

  • What is radicalization and when does it become a problematic social issue?
  • Which patterns, pathways, and profiles of radicalization can be identified? How do such processes differ in regard to diverging social (online/offline) contexts? 
  • Which innovations concerning scientific methods, theoretical thinking, and political decision-making are necessary to deal with the phenomenon of Islamist radicalization?

2) Social challenges: Radicalized milieus, Islamophobic counter-movements, new types of conflicts
Processes of radicalization are not taking place in a social vacuum. Radicalization is also a result of interactions between societal developments, right-wing counter-movements, as well as dynamics between Islamist activists and federal control agencies, media, and political actors. Mechanisms fostering radicalization in conjunction with these interactions are processes of stigmatization, repression, and criminalization. Therefore, leading questions regarding this topic are:

  • What influence does state prosecution have on the development of the Salafist scene and on individual/collective processes of radicalization?
  • Which new developments do we have to face within radicalized milieus? 
  • Are there best practices to avoid stigmatization and criminalization as a side-effect of state control?

3) Prevention, intervention, de-Radicalization: Options and limits
To date, measures of security policy alone are not able to effectively control the phenomenon of Islamist radicalization and jihadist violence. These efforts need to be supplemented with evidence-based measures of prevention, risk-assessment, and de-radicalization. Accordingly, experiences with existing prevention and intervention programs have to be evaluated. On the one hand, knowledge from social workers and pedagogic counselors is an important resource for understanding processes of radicalization. On the other hand, prevention programs can benefit from scientific findings concerning trajectories and risk factors.
Therefore, the leading questions regarding this topic are:

  • What do we know about requirements and best practices for prevention programs in certain contexts (prison, school, Muslim community)?
  • Where do promising opportunities for intervention arise?
  • What interactions do we observe between prevention programs and state measures of prosecution?


Time Frame and Deadlines
Abstracts of no more than 300 words with a clear indication of the theoretical framework and empirical background of the work should be sent by November 20, 2017 to:
Based on the abstracts, the guest editors will invite the submission of full manuscripts by December 1, 2017. The submission deadline for the full manuscripts will be February 28, 2018. Manuscripts will be handled by one of the guest editors and peer-reviewed. We will aim to provide feedback to authors by June 30, 2018, so that revisions may be submitted no later than July 31, 2018. The focus section is expected to be available online before the end of 2018.